A fun park and play surf wave in a section that is mostly flat or fast moving water. Hard eddy lines, boils and a bouncy surf are there at higher levels.
Put in by walking across the train tracks on a well-beaten track.
The wave (sometimes more of a hole) stretches across the entire river, with two powerful eddies on river right and river left that provide eddy service and will essentially carry you back up. It is formed by a shelf that drops off at the bottom. Great place to practice combat rolling, as if you don't roll right away, you'll be swallowed up in the boils/small whirlpools below and need to wait it out before rolling.
At levels from 250-350, the wave is a bit more retentive, and can be side surfed.
At 350-750 cfs on the Williamstown gauge, the wave is a fun, bouncy, surf, with strong boils and funny water in the runout. It's possible to catch the wave from either side, good practice to surf in on the V from river right. At this level, a playboat is much preferred for surfing as longer boats tend to get caught in the downstream flow and flipped. At medium to low levels a fun seam opens up on river right, where you can side surf and practice flat spins.
At 1500+ cfs, the surfing wave becomes a cycling monster, where it switches from a glassy wave to a monster breaking wave in ~15 secs. Haven't tried to surf it yet, but I'm hesistant to say it'd be surfable, as the monster breaking wave is pointed downstream and looks super flushy.
Note: I'm still working out the correlation between these two USGS gauges, one downstream (Eagle Bridge, NY) and one upstream (Williamstown, MA). For now, I have more beta on the upstream gauge correlation, but the downstream gauge may be a better indication of actually how much water is in the river. Neither gauge is great though, as there are multiple dams in between the upstream gauge and the playspot and the playspot and the downstream gauge. These dams change water levels significantly.
A good rule of thumb is that it pretty much always runs. The surfing experience at 300 vs. 600 is not wildly different.
"High" = 800 cfs and above
Medium = 350-750 cfs
Low = <300 cfs
I'm still working out the correlation between these two USGS gauges, one downstream (Eagle Bridge, NY) and one upstream (Williamstown, MA). For now, I have more beta on the upstream gauge correlation, but the downstream gauge may be a better indication of actually how much water is in the river. Neither gauge is great though, as there are multiple dams in between the upstream gauge and the playspot and the playspot and the downstream gauge. These dams change water levels significantly.
Permits are not required for this reach.
Park in the pull-off next to the railroad tracks on NY 346 (42.816386, -73.300686) and carefully walk across the tracks on an established path. If you want to run the rapid first, walk upstream along the tracks a bit and put in.
On the Hoosic
Jackson surfing a demo ducky from Zelgear
If someone gets hurt on a river, or you read about a whitewater-related injury, please report it to
American Whitewater. Don't worry about multiple submissions from other witnesses, as our safety
editors will turn multiple witness reports into a single unified accident report.
Paddlers on the Lehigh River below the Francis E. Walter Dam and Reservoir are concerned that a planned study by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and its partners, the Delaware River Basin Commission (DRBC) and the New York City Department of Environmental Protection will lead to a reduction in whitewater boating opportunities on the Lehigh. The study will evaluate the feasibility of various alternatives to optimize project operation. Aside from the project's authorized primary missions of flood risk management and recreation, the study will also consider water supply and water quality, to identify possible improvements to the existing structure, infrastructure, and operations that will support current and future demands within the region. The Army Corps is holding a public meeting on January 9, 2020 at the Mountain Laurel Resort in White Haven, PA from 6-8 p.m. to explain the study and hear public comments. American Whitewater, Appalachian Mountain Club, and other organizations are expected to file comments with the Army Corps prior to the September 29th deadline in order to share our concerns about the study and potential impacts on boating, the outdoor recreation economy, and the Delaware RIver Basin. We encourage our members to attend the public meeting to voice their concerns.
2010 marked the 25th anniversary of protecting the Black and Moose rivers! View an online video documentary on the Moose River and the early role that American Whitewater played in protecting this amazing river.
Log into the American Whitewater website and you can contribute to river descriptions,
flow and access tips, and maps associated with runs you've done. You can even add new
runs to the inventory!